Helping Tomboy users of Ubuntu One

Hello, Tomboy hackers!

A while back we implemented Tomboy's Snowy web sync API at Ubuntu One (before our first beta release, actually :)). Its backend on our servers was CouchDB, which at that point was planned to be our standard data sync API. As some of you may know, that didn't work out; we dropped support for CouchDB a year or so ago. We've built u1db, which is much better at the data sync tasks that we want to do with Ubuntu One, and that's now released and has become U1's standard data sync infrastructure.

The Snowy API implementation we built at Ubuntu One is something we've been unable to put the time into that we want; I know the Tomdroid and WebNotes and Chalk developers have had some issues syncing with it, and it really needs some extra work, because it's not as well-built as we'd like. This has now got to the point where we can't afford to support it any more, especially since it's currently forcing us to keep Couch alive to keep it running. What this means is that we're going to close that API. Now, we've got a bunch of users using Tomboy with Ubuntu One, and we like notes sync, so we'd like there to be an alternative. There are a couple of ideas here:

Tomboy could grow a u1db backend. I know that there's been some talk in the past about swappable backends for Tomboy, and if that work's going on, I'd be happy to provide enough information about u1db to enable someone to write a Tomboy backend which uses u1db to store notes (and thus can sync with Ubuntu One). If someone's interested in doing that, I'd like to hear from them.

Alternatively, we can make it easy for people currently using Tomboy and syncing with Ubuntu One to switch to another Snowy API service. I know people have been working on Tomboy Online, and we could talk about how we (U1) can encourage people to switch to Tomboy Online if they prefer. There are also standalone Snowy API servers: Rainy and Midgard2, and we could provide instructions on how a technical user might set up their own server using these. I'd like to hear any ideas people might have on how we can make it easy for Tomboy users to keep having their notes synced, and which services there are which provide the Snowy API which we could encourage users to join up with.

Perhaps there's another approach that I haven't thought of? The important thing here is people using Tomboy can continue to use it if they want; U1 is closing the existing notes sync service but we want to make it easy for people to move to the best alternative, whoever provides that alternative. Your thoughts are invited!

Stuart Langridge, U1 API bloke

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